Partner Organization:  Various partner organizations, in cooperation with the Jerusalem Global Gateway and Tantur Ecumenical Institute of the University of Notre Dame.

See below for description and scope of work.

Location:  Primarily Jerusalem and Bethlehem. May include other locations in Israel and the West Bank.

Number of Students:  2-4 students

Dates:  Students must be flexible and open with regards to dates. Coordination of dates will depend on availability of various partner agencies and availability of facility and staff at the Tantur Ecumenical Institute and Notre Dame’s Jerusalem Global Gateway. There is some preference on the part of the Jerusalem Global Gateway for arrival to coincide with the start of NDI’s summer Jerusalem program, but to be determined. ISSLP 2018 arrived on May 19. A ten (10) week placement is preferred for this site.

In person opportunities summer 2022: Yes

Virtual opportunities summer 2022: See scope of work below

Additional Information:

Due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, if we are unable to deploy students in person, students will not be obligated to complete the ISSLP and may withdraw without penalty. For students wishing to continue with the ISSLP in virtual mode, ISSLP staff will work with them to be placed with a virtual international service option.

Participation Requirements:

  • Language & Proficiency Requirement: None required though preferred candidates have demonstrated proficiency in Arabic and/or Hebrew. Some site placements require proficiency in Arabic and/or Hebrew.
  • Gender Requirement: None
  • Required Experience: None
  • Major Requirement: None required but students in fine art, art & design, film, music, theology, international relations, peace studies, or in the ROTC military branches may find interest among the possible partner organizations and scope of work available.
  • Student Minimum Age: None
  • Special Requirements: Due to the ongoing security issues in the region, students must comply with security protocols and travel restrictions posed by in-country staff, site partners, & ISSLP personnel.
  • Other: Students should have background knowledge about the history of the region and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. 

Special Training Required Prior to Summer Deployment: 

(The following sessions and workshops will be organized and provided by the ISSLP during the spring semester. Additional training sessions may be added as needed.)

  • First Aid & CPR Training (depending on scope of work)
  • Blood Borne Pathogen Training (depending on scope of work)
  • Disabled Population Volunteering
  • Working with Children
  • Self Defense Session or R.A.D.
  • Other sessions as deemed necessary

Special Note on Safety and Security:

As in all ISSLP locations, safety and security for UND students, faculty, and staff is of great importance in Jerusalem. The Jerusalem Global Gateway has developed context-specific safety and security protocols; ISSLP participants are welcomed into those systems. Access to Tantur facilities is limited and monitored 24 hours a day. Notre Dame faculty and staff or ISSLP site partner organizations who have experience living and traveling throughout the region lead all off-site program excursions. Additionally, prior to departure and during their on-site orientation students are briefed on necessary safety and security measures. Students are also expected to comply with the security protocols of ISSLP partner organizations.

Due to the ongoing political situation in the region, this site will be consistently monitored, evaluated, and assessed for safety prior to deployment and during the ISSLP. Risk mitigation measures are subject to change depending on the situation. While all ISSLP sites are at risk of being cancelled at any time due to developing security or health situations on the ground, this site in particular is of higher risk. While it cannot be guaranteed, ISSLP staff will do our best to work with students to find an alternative site placement.

Site Description:  

In partnership with the Jerusalem Global Gateway, International Summer Service Learning Program placements resumed in Jerusalem in 2016.

ISSLP works with the Jerusalem Global Gateway to facilitate ISSLP placements within Jerusalem, Bethlehem, and other locations. ISSLP’s home base will be the Tantur Ecumenical Institute, where students become part of the community of residents and scholars residing at Tantur for study and sabbatical programs. Additionally, ISSLP students may overlap with Notre Dame International’s three- week summer study abroad program, whose students will also be residing and studying at Tantur, and participate in part, if not in full, with the Jerusalem summer program.

Unlike other ISSLP sites, the unique environment of the area and the opportunities that exist make for a rich menu of possible ISSLP site partner organizations for which students can be engaged. Final determination of site placements will depend on matching the needs and capacity of the partner organizations with students’ interests, experiences, academic interests, language capacities, and other skills. Once selected into the program, students will work closely with the ISSLP faculty director and staff to determine suitability of the various site placements and to ascertain final site assignments. Students will be encouraged to work with a couple organizations during the course of the ISSLP summer placement.

Scope of Work:

Notice: Scope of work may have some changes based on the needs of the partner organizations at the time of student arrival/engagement. 

This section reflects the most recent scope of work for students who deployed in the last few years to Jerusalem. This scope of work may change based on the needs of the organization at the time of student arrival and/or due to COVID-19 restrictions.

There are multiple organizations with whom the ISSLP has initiated relationships and could serve as full or part-time final site placements for students. They include but are not limited to:

These sites can be in person and/or virtual for summer 2022.

I. Wi’am Palestinian Conflict Resolution & Transformation Center, Bethlehem

Founded and directed by Notre Dame Peace Studies graduate, Mr. Zoughbi Zoughbi, Wi’am aims to improve the quality of relationships and promote peace and reconciliation in the community. They offer programs for women, children, and youth and offers group, individual, and educational interventions to help the community cope with the everyday trauma of life in the Occupied Territories. ISSLP students will assist with the children’s and youth summer camps programming and should expect to take initiative as they may called up on to create the daily agenda, art projects and prep materials along with other duties. Students with creative capacity in art, music, dance, and theatre could find venues to use their talents at Wi’am. Females with proficiency in Arabic would be attractive to Wi’am and could open up opportunities to observe and assist with the women’s groups. Arabic is also helpful with the children in the youth summer camps. Additionally, students could assist in writing and research areas under the mentorship and supervision of Wi’am’s Director.  

Scope of work virtual: Assisting in writing and research areas under the mentorship and supervision of Wi'am's Director.

II. Sabeel Ecumenical Liberation Theology Center

Sabeel is an ecumenical grassroots liberation theology movement among Palestinian Christians. Sabeel seeks to deepen the faith of Palestinian Christians, promote unity among them and with the rest of their community, and lead them to act for justice and peace. Sabeel strives to develop a spirituality based on justice, peace, nonviolence, liberation, and reconciliation for the different national and faith communities. The word Sabeel is Arabic for “the way” and also “a spring of life-giving water.” Sabeel also works to promote a more accurate international awareness regarding the identity, presence, and witness of Palestinian Christians as well as their contemporary concerns.  They encourage individuals and groups from around the world to work for a just, comprehensive, and enduring peace informed by truth and empowered by prayer and action.

Opportunities exist for students to be matched with one of Sabeel’s numerous projects as well as their usual daily activities. Summer 2022 Sabeel projects include the Young Adult Conference, research on Palestinian villages and towns, and training on nonviolence. Past ISSLP student was matched with Kumi Now. Kumi Now becomes an active and creative movement through its weekly Kumi Actions, which aim to use a unique nonviolent tactic to spread awareness and share facts on the ground of the situation in Palestine-Israel, put pressure on the powerful decision makers of the world, or build community both locally and globally among activists. Sabeel also plans to organize monthly festivals in Jerusalem during 2022.

Scope of work virtual: Writing and research on topics of theology in the Middle East.

III. L'Arche Bethlehem - Ma'an lil-Hayat, Bethlehem

See also L'Arche Bethlehem Facebook page

The L'Arche community is thriving in Bethlehem and could be a possibility for a very unique student and set of skills/experience (experience with those with disabilities, occupational or physical therapy, and/or marketing and fundraising). Musical and art skills could be an additional benefit and ministry to the community. ISSLP 2017 & 2018 students worked at Ma'an Lil Hayat, a L'Arche workshop for people with special needs producing nativity scenes from local Bethlehem wool, assisting in the different production rooms and during free time.  Opportunity may exist for student at the L'Arche Summer Camp at the Sea of Galilee.

Scope of work virtual: Fundraising assistance and research in new markets.

IV. Alrowwad Cultural and Arts Society, Aida Refugee Camp

Alrowwad Cultural and Arts Society is a cultural center in the Aida refugee camp mainly serving youth and women.  Founded on the principle of “Beautiful Resistance,” Alrowwad provides a host of programs and activities ranging from theater, dance, music, visual arts and woodwork to summer camps, language classes, photography and video editing. Alrowwad was founded by refugees from the Aida camp, and is run entirely by local community members with the assistance of some international volunteers.  It is extremely dedicated to helping the community and challenging the occupation. Previous ISSLP students have taught English, tutored and as counselor for Alrowwad’s summer camp.

Scope of work virtual: Possible virtual work includes teaching English and editing newsletters and other publications by Alrowwad, project writing/fundraising, or research about human rights topics or the impact of culture and arts on children.

V. Tent of Nations, Bethlehem

Volunteering at Tent of Nations is a unique opportunity to experience life on a Palestinian farm and enjoy the hospitality of the Nassar family, learn about tending to the land & about the challenges posed by the Israeli occupation, and to meet people from all over the world. As a volunteer, you will be part of a small community working together to keep the Tent of Nations farm and projects going and growing. Opportunities to be a part of one-week work camps or to intern (1-2 mos) exist. Students who might wish to intern at Tent of Nations may reside on site or possibly live part-time on site and at Tantur. There is flexibility in determining what a commitment and schedule with Tent of Nations could look like (i.e. 3-4 days a week at Tent of Nations and 2-3 days with other organization living at Tantur).

Scope of work virtual: Possible virtual work includes research and projects related to sustainability, farming in dry climates, climate change, and conservation.

These sites have been ISSLP partners in the past and could be explored as potential sites (in person or virtual) for 2022, depending on student interest.

VI. American Near East Refugee Agency (Anera)

American Near East Refugee Agency (Anera) is a major American non-profit organization, which aims to help Palestinian refugees in the West Bank, Gaza and Lebanon. Anera works in the fields of Agriculture, Education, Health, Infrastructure and Economic Development. The few highest positions are held by Americans, but nearly the entire organization is staffed by local Palestinians with knowledge of the issues that they and their communities face, and the approaches that are needed to counter them. Opportunities exist for students to visit project sites, meet with community members and assist with reports, website and social media communications post visits.  Student research projects are possible with Anera and should be coordinated with ISSLP director.

VII. B’Tselem - The Israeli Information Center for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories, Jerusalem

While internship opportunities are not typical at B’Tselem, they were open to further discussion of the idea of students with certain skills (i.e. writing and film) and/or with language proficiency to assist in certain departments of the organization. Some possibilities discussed included potential for film students working with the video department or students with some Arabic or Hebrew and English to be general English proofreaders, write or edit briefing papers and concept notes, work on development and communications materials (grants and PR publications), database updates, and short term research projects (i.e. researched resources such as embassy contacts, etc.). Placement at B’Tselem would depend very much on needs of B’Tselem and the particular ISSLP student profile.

VIII. Holy Land Trust, Bethlehem

Holy Land Trust offers their own summer educational immersion programs – the Palestine Summer Encounter. See for description of the Palestine Summer Encounter and summer dates. Opportunities for home rebuilding are also possible depending on timing of building projects. ISSLPs may also be interested in learning about Holy Land Trust’s programs with Palestinian youth and girls empowerment. The ISSLP could work with Holy Land Trust as a provider of the ISSLP for students or work with them as needed to supplement educational programming within the ISSLP.

IX. Lutheran World Federation (LWF), Jerusalem

The LWF Vocational Training Program (VTP), operating since 1949, empowers Palestinian youth, particularly the needy and refugees with a focus on women, by providing vocational training that results in graduates contributing positively to their civil society. Through LWF’s VTP, there could be potential for ISSLP students who are creative and have skills in the arts – pottery, painting, mixed media, textiles, sewing, design – to design short term workshops  of 1-2 weeks for youth or women. Other skills and workshop ideas are welcome. The VTP consists of the Vocational Training Center in the Jerusalem suburb of Beit Hanina and the Vocational Training Center in Ramallah, as well as the programs run through the satellite outreach project.

X. Rabbis for Human Rights, Jerusalem

Opportunities to assist with the work and mission of Rabbis for Human Rights would need to be further explored with the leadership of the organization.  Opportunities would be available in fundraising and database work along with opportunities to work part-time in the field in the West Bank.  Students with some proficiency in Arabic is helpful in this regard.

XI. Neve Shalom – Wahat al Salam, Between Jerusalem and Tel Aviv

Neve Shalom – Wahat al Salam (NSWAS) is Arabic and Hebrew for Oasis of Peace, an intentional community jointly established by Jewish and Palestinian Arab citizens of Israel. The community receives only a few interns (typically 6 mos, exception only for 2 mos) and volunteers (8-10 week minimum) with profiles that match the needs of the community. While there is much for interns and volunteers to learn about Israeli and Palestinian cultures, the conflict between them, and about the responses to this conflict expressed in the village and through its educational institutions, NSWAS has very explicit roles for interns and volunteers. See website description for the kind of work that volunteers are needed which is in the area of the everyday running of the village: Interns assist in the office of communications and development writing grant proposals and PR publications (articles, e-newsletter, website, etc.): Students with fluency or strong proficiency in Hebrew or Arabic would be highly attractive for NSWAS to the extent that they would also be able to translate Hebrew and/or Arabic documents into English (and other languages) and assist in the School and other educational programs for youth (only open to those with language proficiency). NSWAS would also be a fascinating place to carry out thesis research for students of peace studies. Students suited to serve at NSWAS would likely board full time in the village but to be determined.

XII. United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), Jerusalem and the West Bank

Following the 1948 Arab-Israeli conflict, UNRWA was established by United Nations General Assembly resolution 302 (IV) to carry out direct relief and works programs for Palestine refugees. UNRWA’s contemporary mandate is to provide relief, human development and protection services to Palestine refugees and persons displaced by the 1967 hostilities in its fields of operation: Jordan, Lebanon, the Syrian Arab Republic, West Bank and the Gaza Strip.  In the absence of a solution to the Palestine refugee problem, the General Assembly has repeatedly renewed UNRWA's mandate. Today, some 5 million Palestine refugees are eligible for UNRWA's services which encompass education, health care, relief and social services, camp infrastructure and improvement, microfinance and emergency assistance, including in times of armed conflict, both inside and outside designated refugee camps.  UNRWA does not administer the refugee camps but is responsible for running education, health, and relief and social services programs, which are located inside and outside camps. Internships within the Agency are rare but opportunities exist depending on the profile of the students and needs of the Agency. ISSLP interns would work out of the West Bank Field Office (WBFO) located in East Jerusalem. A strong profile includes English fluency (most materials produced by the Agency are in English) and some familiarity with Arabic (not strictly necessary but preferred, as the majority of employees are Palestinian). Interns must be willing to comply with all UN neutrality policies for the duration of their placement. Interns may visit the camps between one and several times but should expect most of their work to be done in the office ISSLP students can either apply for advertised internships positions in Jerusalem and environs or absent of internship postings, put forth their resume and application seeking internships opportunities within the Agency. ISSLP and ND Global Gateway faculty directors can facilitate the process of inquiry and application of internships for those students interested in working with the Agency in some capacity.

XIII.  A New Dawn in the Negev, Rahat Israel

While ISSLP placements are unlikely feasible with A New Dawn in the Negev, one to three day experiential learning opportunities** could be arranged with advanced planning. A New Dawn in the Negev is a Bedouin-Jewish organization founded in 2009 to elevate educational standards in the Negev with a strong emphasis on the Bedouin community. The Bedouins are a subgroup within the Arab minority in the State of Israel. Formerly a nomadic people, they are rich in history and heritage but by official government statistics, the Bedouin population is in the lowest socio-economic rung of Israeli society. The state of Bedouins living in unrecognized settlements is even worse. Land ownership, unemployment, extreme poverty, alienation, high population growth, lack of human rights and education are the challenges within today’s Bedouin communities. A New Dawn in the Negev seeks to bridge the inequality gaps that exist and build a community of coexistence and peace among all residents of the Negev.

**Experiential learning opportunities (i.e. 1-2 day field visits and meetings) could be arranged with any of the organizations listed above in addition to primary placements with other organizations in the area.

Housing and Lodging Information:

ISSLP students will be based out of the Jerusalem Global Gateway, which shares space with Tantur Ecumenical Institute. Tantur facilities are located on the southern edge of Jerusalem between the Palestinian village of Beit Safafa, the Israeli settlements of Gilo and Har Homa, and the main checkpoint into Bethlehem. It is preferred for students to be housed at Tantur for the length of their stay with the exception of possible short term lodging alternatives at certain site partner organizations where the daily commuting distance is not practical. At Tantur, students share an apartment for six residents, a suite for three or a single room based on gender. Each apartment or suite has a shared bath and kitchen. Meals are provided through Tantur dining facilities.  

For More Information:

For links to the Jerusalem Global Gateway and Tantur Ecumenical Institute, see

For helpful context and information about Notre Dame's study abroad programs in the Jerusalem Global Gateway, review semester program and summer programs.

Jennifer Eburuoh '23 (ISSLP 2021)* (Virtual 2021)
*Did not deploy due to COVID-19 pandemic

Notice: Certain sites may be canceled and other sites added at any point during the selection and orientation process.

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